New Delhi, Feb 23: While hearing the Kerala conversion case, the Supreme Court on Thursday raised a question on the legality of high court’s decision to annul the marriage of Hadiya, an alleged victim of ‘love jihad’. Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices A M Khanwilkar, D Y Chandrachud asked the Kerala HC, if it had the power to scrap a marriage between consenting adults on the ground it was not in their best interest.
“Marriage and investigation are two different things. As far as marriage is concerned, it does not warrant any investigation. Investigation has nothing to do with it. You can investigate any other thing,” the court said, adding if the high court was justified in nullifying the marriage is a pure question of law.
On the other hand, senior advocate Shyam Divan, appearing for Hadiya’s father, said it was a case of vulnerable adults and the high court was justified in nullifying the marriage by exercising its power under Article 226 of the Constitution. “In this case, marriage was used as a pretext to keep it out of the court’s jurisdiction,” Divan said.
25-year-old Hadiya, who was at the centre of an alleged love jihad controversy had filed an affidavit before the top court claiming that she willingly converted to Islam and wants to live with her husband Shafin Jahan. She had urged the court to set aside the judgement of the Kerala HC that had annulled the marriage terming it an instance of ‘love jihad’. The matter had come to light when Hadiya’s husband had challenged the Kerala High Court’s order to annul his marriage with Hadiya and sending her to her parents’ custody.
(With inputs from PTI)